Plants that did well in 2022

Well, Covid and Long Covid drove a coach and horses through my plans to do lots of writing last year. 

However, I did compile a list of plants that coped with the brief intense heat.

After consulting with a gardening friend who also opens her garden for charity, I have compiled a list of plants that did well in our difficult 2022 summer.  Basically they stood up and performed in very hot sun and with very little water.  

One list is on my friend’s chalk soil.  She did not water at all.  The other is from my mixture of rocky, sandy loam with areas of clay, which did receive moderate water.  I have combined the duplicates here.

On both soil types :

  • Agapanthus
  • Asters (remarkably long blooming and lush)
Aster frikartii “Jungfrau” flowering in late September
Aster frikartii “Jungfrau” in late September; started early August
  • Calamintha
  • Dahlias 
  • Oenotheras, both lindheimeri and speciosa 
Oenothera (Gaura) “Siskiyou Pink”
  • All Grasses (they loved the sun)
  • Sedums (all sorts)
  • Salvias (all types on most soils; best all around performer)
Salvia “Wendy’s Surprise” in 2022
Salvia “Wendy’s Surprise” best of the best

In a Friend’s Unwatered Chalk Garden and for an earlier bloom time:

  • Argyranthemum (Marguerite daisies)
  • Ammi
Ammi performing well in the dry weather of 2022
Ammi - glorious photo by John Glover
  • Ceratostigma 
  • Echium
  • Geranium “Ann Thompson”
  • Heuchera
  • Tulbaghia (so pretty, but too stinky for me!)

On my silty, loamy, stony soil and for later flowering :

  • Artemisias (all)
  • Clematis viorna/vitacella “Elf” (retained green foliage into November)
  • Coreopsis verticillata  “Moonbeam”, “Crazy Cayenne”, (undismayed by hot sun, constant flowering)
Coreopsis verticillata “Moonbeam”
  • Crocosmia (large ones like “Lucifer”)
  • Dianthus superbus (Fringed Pink), but probably all (divine scent!)
  • Echinaceas, both purpureums and hybrids
Echinacea purpurea “Magnus”
  • Fuchsia Bernisser Hardy” (cast iron, happy in full, hot sun—great bee plant; super long season)
  • Hydrangea quercifolias: species, “Snowflake” and  “Applause”
  • Lavenders intermedia “Sussex” and “Niko”
  • Lilies (Oriental x Trumpet crosses)
  • Japanese Maples (fabulous color)
Acer “Nishiki gawa”
  • Japanese Cherries (wonderful color)
  • Ruta graveolens “Jackman’s Blue”
  • Thalictrums (even in sun: rochebrunnianum “Lilac Charm”, delavayi, delavayi “Splendide White” 
  • Verbenas (all sorts)

The annuals that did well :

  • Cosmos
  • Nemesias notably “Amelie”
  • some Diascias: “Emma”, “Appleblossom”
  • Petunias (loved the hot sun and bloomed their socks off!)
  • Brachyscome “Brasco Violet”
Petunias flowering profusely in October

“…be prepared for anything !”

It was a pretty tough summer and I expect that we will have more to come.  But gardeners are an irrepressible lot and we will continue to plan and plant.

It may be that the gardening styles which we have grown up with , especially the English style, replete with hedges, densely planted borders and lawns, all of which require the regular rainfall that used to be provided by Mother Nature, are no longer feasible due to climate changes.

That will be very sad and I will admit to temporary despair at the thought, but there will be ways to continue, albeit with modifications, with our favorite passion.

ps: the 2023 season

While southern Europe sweltered, we actually shivered.  In any case, there hasn’t been, so far, any intense heat, for which, I for one, am grateful.  

I have heard complaints but that wasn’t from gardeners.  Not a good year for Tomatoes out-of-doors, however, my crazy Polish Tomato “Zolotoi Vek” (no: I don’t know what it means, either) is showing promising signs of ripening.

Is there a solution for all this seasonal uncertainty?…be prepared for anything!

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